The Menil Collection

The Menil Collection in the Houston, Texas area is a museum unlike any other. Located in the heart of the city, this unique art collection offers visitors an unparalleled experience that has captivated patrons since it opened its doors to the public in 1987. The museum's permanent collection consists of over 20,000 works of art spanning numerous centuries and cultures worldwide. With its encyclopedic European paintings, The Menil Collection has something for different tastes or interests.

John and Dominique de Menil's passionate vision for bringing diverse artwork to Houston is at the root of this incredible collection. Through their dedication, the couple amassed a world-class trove of pieces from antiquity to the 20th century and beyond. The facility was designed by renowned architect Renzo Piano, who incorporated features that allow natural light to filter into each room, thus creating an uplifting atmosphere for visitors.

What to Experience at The Menil Collection

The Menil Collection is more than just a place to admire the artwork. It's an experience that immerses you in culture and history.

  • Guided tours. You can learn about each piece and its respective artist or period.
  • Educational programs. The Menil offers classes and lectures that explore a wide range of art-related and culture topics.
  • The Rothko Chapel. This stunning chapel features 14 large-scale abstract paintings by Mark Rothko, creating a space for meditation and contemplation.
  • The Cy Twombly Gallery. A distinct environment with works created by the renowned American artist across four decades of his career, enjoy paintings, sculptures, photographs, prints, and sound pieces within this intimate room.
  • The Byzantine Fresco Chapel Museum. This jewel box museum contains two independent chapels on-site built in 1997 to house sacred frescoes from the 13th century.


  • Park. The museum also has an outdoor area with a park featuring sculptures by some of the world's most renowned artists, including Mark di Suvero and Tony Smith. The grounds are often used to host special events, such as movie screenings and art installations, making it an excellent place for enjoying nature in the city.
  • Quaint Shops. The surrounding neighborhood includes quaint shops providing visitors with an ambiance of old-world charm. You can buy unique art objects, books, and other items related to the museum.
  • Cafes. Several eateries within walking distance offer a selection of local and international cuisines. After a day's visit to the museum, you can relax and enjoy a meal in one of these cafes.

Visit The Menil Collection for a Unique and Inspiring Experience

The Menil Collection is a special place that combines all the elements of art, culture, and history in one remarkable setting. From the permanent collection to its rotating exhibits, this Houston museum has something for everyone – truly an experience you won't forget!